Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
Most stocks fell on Wednesday as markets remembered that an indefinite government shutdown actually has the potential to be rather unpleasant. Weak jobs data from the private sector for September didn't help the mood. Federal payroll reports usually paint a clearer picture, but with no one around to put them together, they won't be coming out at all until a budget deal is reached. The S&P 500 Index (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) lost 1 point, or 0.1%, to end at 1,693.
United Technologies (NYSE: UTX ) is one of the S&P 500 stocks toughest hit by the shutdown so far. Shares shed 2.2% as the industrial goods giant was forced to essentially halt production of Black Hawk helicopters. The military helicopters are required to have government inspectors present as they're being produced, so it looks like those birds may be grounded for a while.
No victim of disappearing inspectors, Alcoa (NYSE: AA ) shares lost 1.8% on a brutal analyst forecast from Deutsche Bank. The bank downgraded shares to sell as it projected double-digit percentage declines in aluminum prices by 2015. Extrapolating on that scenario, the analyst thinks Alcoa's earnings per share could be cut in half as a result.
Lastly, diversified software company Adobe Systems (NASDAQ: ADBE ) fell 1.7%. Other than the general downtrend on Wall Street, there wasn't a dominant catalyst sending those shares lower. CEO Shantanu Narayen was honored with a seat on Pfizer's board of directors on Monday, however, so there could be concern about the division of his time and efforts going forward.
1 stock Buffett wishes he could buy but can't
It's often assumed that small investors are at a great disadvantage relative to hedge fund managers and other institutional investors. But that's not always true. Bound by multibillion-dollar portfolios and strict bylaws that govern what they can and can't invest in, these giants are often prohibited from tapping the market's greatest stocks until it's too late -- that is, after the stocks have already shot into large-cap status. In this free report, our analysts identify one such stock that Warren Buffett himself wishes he could buy but is effectively restricted from doing so because of its size. To discover the identity of this stock instantly (and for free!), simply click here now.